Is It Okay To Skip Gears In A Manual Transmission?


Now-a-days automatic transmission vehicles are getting popular, with ease to drive and improved mileage. People are preferring to buy an automatic transmission. But when it comes to real drivers, they choose manual transmission.

Today we are going to discuss whether it is okay to skip gears while driving a manual transmission?

Many regular experience drivers tend to do this, they skip gears. They will skip the second gear and switch from first to third or skip fourth and switch from fifth to third. They tend to do this in up shifting and down shifting. And yes it is okay to skip gears as long as you are matching the revs.

When you are up shifting lets say from second to fourth, remember to release the clutch slowly so that the revs can drop, if you release the clutch quickly you will feel lurch. There is a lurch because your vehicle wheels and engine are trying to match speed. This might wear your clutch more and can affect your car balance. While in up shifting it is okay to skip gears as long as you allow the revs to drop, only issue is you will lose pick up, because you are on higher gear and the engine revs are low. Actually it is beneficial in city traffic as you will save fuel and the wear is not that high.

But in downshift it is very important to rev match. For example if you’re shifting from fifth to third on a highway try to bring up the revs to match with lower gear. If you don’t match the revs you can upset the balance of your car and even lock up the driving wheels (Front or rear depending on FWD or RWD). You are also going to wear your clutch off, because you are asking the clutch which is spinning at a high-speed to match the engine which is spinning at a low-speed. That’s why you need to match both speed for proper balance.

What about skipping gears from a stand still?

It is advised to start in first gear, but if you start in second gear you are again going to wear your clutch off. This time it is because when you start in first gear you can release your clutch around 8-12 kmph, but if you start in second gear you have to take it to higher speed to release your clutch around 15-20 kmph. Because to release the clutch you must have a higher speed according to the gear. It is okay to start in second in slippery conditions though, where you need more traction.

In short it is okay to skip gears if you are comfortable with it and, otherwise do not do it. Even if you’re doing it do not do down shifting, it is more harmful for your car.

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Also published on Medium.